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2 College Sophomore

Parking: There is no parking on campus during the day. Most people use park and ride.

3 Recent Alumnus

Parking: There are places to park if you know where to look. Cobb deck is one place, University Square is another. Also, Ram's deck down near the Dean Dome. Always be wary of special events on campus and how that affects free parking.

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Junior

Parking: Never enough spots and the lots available are incredibly expensive.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Parking: Parking is expensive but close. You also do not need a car on campus.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Freshman

Parking: Parking is terrible as campus is very compact. Free on the weekends. You don't need a car anyway


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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Parking at UNC is more of a hassle than it's worth, according to most students. Parking passes are rare commodities, handed out as selectively as Duke–UNC basketball tickets. The process to obtain this "golden ticket" comes down to luck, as well. In the summer, students who wish to have a car in the upcoming year enter a lottery, with priority given based on seniority and distance from campus. Not only is obtaining a parking pass difficult, it is also expensive, running close to $400 for many students.

If you are set on bringing a car to Chapel Hill, plan ahead because parking passes go fast. If you're a freshman or a sohmore, chances are good that you won't receive a parking pass, but luckily it's only a year or two until you can have a car with decent access. Those who live on campus or within a few miles most likely don't need a car or a parking space, as the Chapel Hill Transit system is quite reliable. Other methods of transportation include biking, walking, and school shuttles, and most are better off sticking to those.

Facts & Statistics

Student Parking Lot?
Park and Ride Lot, Cobb Deck, Craige Deck
Freshmen Allowed to Park?
Approximate Parking Permit Cost
$400 per year
Common Parking Tickets
  • Expired meter: $15
  • No parking zone: $30
  • Fire lane: $100
  • Handicapped zone: $200
  • Reserved parking: $200
Best Places to Find a Spot
  • Anywhere after 5 p.m. (all parking lots are open)
  • Bowles Lot
  • Stadium Drive parking lot
  • Student lot behind Avery and Ehringhaus
Good Luck Getting a Spot Here
Cobb Parking Lot
Getting a Parking Permit
Upperclassmen who live off campus have a better shot in the parking permit lottery than all other undergraduates. It is rare for a freshman to get a parking pass, and those that do are sent off-campus to park. If a student doesn't receive a parking pass in the lottery, he or she may be added to a waitlist. If the waitlist doesn't yield positive results, one may go to the Department of Public Safety to purchase any remaining permits.
Parking Services
Department of Public Safety
285 Manning Drive
(919) 962-3951

Student Polls

How convenient is off-campus parking?    Based on 156 responses

  • 2% It's free, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 10% It's free, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 8% The cost is reasonable, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 49% The cost is reasonable, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 11% The cost is totally outrageous, but you can usually find a spot.
  • 20% The cost is totally outrageous, and there are never any open spots.

Rate the campus parking on the following topics    Based on 151 responses

Very poor
  • Distance from class
  • Distance from dorms
  • Ease of finding a spot
  • Parking enforcement
  • Permit cost


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